25 May 2014

Pointless Killing Spree

Starwalker was in his novelty fit Merlin and on a killing spree. So far, only two ships (Kestrel and Tristan) had actually left before they were destroyed. A number of ships over the last two weeks had not escaped:
  1. Merlin - blaster fit
  2. Incursus - void ammunition has a tracking penalty. Starwalker had switched to only using Caldari Navy Antimatter (CNAM) even with a dual web when he had seen misses in the log. But after examining multiple logs it seemed that there was always up to two misses even with CNAM
  3. Slasher - dual tank but it did not help
  4. Incursus - null ammunition was used by Jake Soldette, this proved the incorrect choice as Starwalker was at point blank range with CNAM. If the Incursus could have established range control, perhaps around 5km then it would have been a good choice of ammunition against another blaster. Alternatively he anticipated a railgun fit Merlin and chose null as the right ammunition, if so, the blaster firing null will typically lose the DPS race against railgun in scram range. Starwalker had proven that to his own satisfaction many times previously with his blaster fits
  5. Breacher - Starwalker flew this Breacher (or very similar). It was good to see it destroyed as it had a good tank
  6. Incursus - dual repair Incursus, even better tank and probably the best T1 frigate tank
  7. Merlin - blaster fit
  8. Atron - railguns, very common on Atrons, especially with pilots like Crake Gatereau using them to great effect
  9. Incursus - dual repair again
  10. Merlin - an armour repair blaster, which had some surprise value. Starwalker had experimented with the fit too but had eventually returned to a shield tank
  11. Incursus - blaster fit
  12. Merlin - railgun fit. Starwalker had won this fight only just after taking a long time to get into point blank range. Afterburner not turned on and then not overheated contributed to a close fight with Starwalker's Merlin on fire but victorious
  13. Breacher - tracking disruptors are normally dangerous but not at point blank range and with no ability to increase transversal through speed or piloting
  14. Incursus - impressed by his attitude, Odd Sangsten wanted to learn and had done some research before asking questions. No doubt Starwalker would lose a ship to this pilot in future
  15. Talwar - a young pilot was always worth taking on as neither skills nor fit are likely to be very good
  16. Thrasher - same as above
  17. Probe - Starwalker still preyed on cyno-ships periodically
  18. Tormentor - good T1 frigate that was uncommon because it was under-rated 
  19. Incursus - the Incursus was working with the Hookbill with each one in a complex
  20. Caldari Navy Hookbill - the Hookbill came to the aid of the Incursus but fortunately it was quickly destroyed too. Sheer DPS and speed had converted a potential two on one to two successive one versus one fights
  21. Incursus - blaster fit using void
  22. Atron - unfit frigate
  23. Atron - blaster fit Atron taking on a blaster fit Merlin at point blank range is the triumph of hope over logic. Starwalker was not a new pilot and sported a -10 security rating. A more sensible tactic would have been to orbit at 5km with null, although in this case a dual web would have scuppered that plan
  24. Rifter - artillery fit, a sensible choice given the Rifter's fall-off bonus but the dual web ensured it was caught and it only had a damage control for a tank
  25. Merlin - MWD blaster fit. A reasonable fit at face value but the ion blasters should have been paired with a scrambler not a point. This frigate could chase frigate kiters but it needed to get close for the kill and most kiters would be faster, so a scrambler was essential to shutdown their MWD 
This selection of ships represented a particular engagement envelope - brawlers and scram range kiters, primarily in complexes. On at least two occasions Starwalker had managed to get the kill quickly and escape before the rest of the gang could establish a secondary point. This was a key advantage of firepower over tank, it was possible to kill the scout or tackle and disappear before the rest of the gang could change the outcome.

Firepower was good but no amount of firepower would help if the target was not in range. Consequently, Starwalker simply ignored obvious kiters such as Condors and Slicers sitting in a complex. His experience with afterburner frigates was that it was exceedingly difficult to slingshot a MWD frigate into scram range to shut down the MWD, often relying on a mistake. More often than not his brawler frigate would be destroyed before that happened.

Since this Merlin had no scrambler the MWD frigate would always enjoy a speed advantage.
It was possible that some of those ships that Starwalker had passed on by had been brawler fit but he did not like the odds of that. This was especially true when entering a complex to fight the target already there, which was what Starwalker was doing 99% of the time.

Whilst the pointless Merlin had its share of success it was not all one way, inevitably, the pointless Merlin had its share of losses such as
  • This Merlin was lost to a station hugging Tornado. Starwalker's Merlin was on fire after having just destroyed another Merlin and had returned to the station to repair. Between arriving at the dock and the delay to be docked his ship had been destroyed. Annoying but in reality just simply another hazard in New Eden
  • This Merlin had taken on an Incursus but had been destroyed when the Atron arrived to assist his corporation mate
  • This Merlin was caught by a Shadow Cartel gate camp
  • This Merlin went into the complex to take on a Federation Navy Comet. Unfortunately, it was a railgun kiter fighting at 18km. The Merlin stood no chance and the later arrival of the CTRL-Q gang mates made no material difference to the outcome
  • This Merlin started the fight against an Incursus but it was simply the tackle for the other frigates in The Bastards small gang
  • This Merlin was lost to a second Tormentor that did not arrive in time to save his mate also in a Tormentor but did arrive in time to establish a point and finish the job 
  • This Merlin was lost to the Important Internet Spaceship gang but not before killing the bait Merlin (kill #25)

No comments:

Post a Comment